Arte Plaza is the name of the creative industries project currently being promoted by the Office of the Historian of the City of Camagüey (OHCC), in central Cuba, to contribute to the revitalization of Camagüey cultural life as a promoter of local socio-economic development.
The objective is to cover the area from the Plazas (squares) of El Carmen, Los Trabajadores and San Juan de Dios, and the Martí and Ignacio Agramonte Parks.
In these areas, all located in the oldest segment of the city, which was declared in 2008 ‘Cultural Heritage of Humanity’ by UNESCO, the heritage characteristics will be improved to help the development of cultural tourism, art and creation, and for the benefit of mainly the local inhabitants and other institutions in those areas.
According to specialists of the OHCC Master Plan announced in a press conference (24 January 2021), the enhancement of culture in the city with its architectural importance is a way to prepare and train the different people and organisations involved.
This is why the project, with financial support from the non-governmental organizations of the European Union OIKOS and CARE France, has among its objectives to carry out a survey of the social and cultural potential of these spaces, as well as their infrastructure.
In Cuba, this approach has few antecedents, apart from the Cuban Art Factory (FAC) in Havana and Trazos Libres in Cienfuegos.
In general, the implementation of this project is concrete proof that culture, the regeneration of traditions, creativity and citizen participation, has enormous potential for local development.
Internationally, the creative industries in some countries are one stream that makes the greatest contribution to the Gross Domestic Product, and there are notable examples in Latin America, including cities in Colombia and Panama.
In these nuclei, from the communities, diverse cultural products are produced through the support of the visual, theatrical, musical, and other arts, as well as design in all its forms, cinema and also the local artisan and gastronomic traditions.